Preliminary Conference Sessions


The Changing Premium Business Model: A Conversation with Al Guido, San Fransisco 49ers and Elevate Sports Ventures

San Francisco 49ers President, Al Guido, also serves as CEO and managing partner of Elevate Sports Ventures, a collaboration between three of the most iconic brands in sports and entertainment – Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment (HBSE), San Francisco 49ers and Creative Artists Agency (CAA). With nearly two decades in the sports industry, Guido has helped deliver record-breaking SBL sales for the 49ers’ home at Levi’s Stadium, as well as record-breaking revenue success at the Dallas Cowboys. As co-managing partner of Elevate Sports Ventures, Guido’s new mission is to deliver an unrivalled offering of services and experience to help clients discover and analyse new opportunities, execute mission critical projects, and grow their brand and bottom line. Hear how the premium business has been transforming in recent years, and learn about recipes for success from one of the most innovative in the industry.

  • Al Guido, CEO & Managing Partner, Elevate Sports Ventures

Renovate with Success: The ROI of Venue Transformations

Good is no longer good enough to stay competitive in the fast-paced world of premium sports & entertainment. Venues are continually being improved and transformed to capitalise on new revenue potential. Loge boxes, chase lounges, social viewing decks, chic bars, and mini-suites are all on the premium inventory rise. Learn about the quick-fix renovations, unique touch-ups and technologies that have generated the greatest ROI, and understand how best to stay current with capital improvements and emerging trends. 

  • Sally Walder, General Manager, Amplify
  • Craig Flindall, Chief Operating Officer, Warwickshire County Cricket Club/Edgbaston Stadium
  • Mark Kelly, Managing Director, Ashton Gate Stadium/Bristol Sport
  • David Manica, Founder & President, Manica Architecture (TBC)

Trends & Advancements – Premium Seating in Today’s Venues

Delivering a perfect venue today — one sustainable for years to come — requires a balance of budget, fan expectation, innovation, and activation. You need to understand bricks and mortar but also technology adaptability, F&B implications, and the evolution of how fans consume sports and entertainment.

This panel of experts has been there, done that, and have insights from a variety of industries that influence the holistic venue experience. Hear how Premium Seating benefits from today’s advancements in design and construction.


Navigating the Financial Path to Revenue Success

It's a challenging task to manage the new financial and ticketing strategies related to the perfect ‘Premium Product Mix’ and pricing for maximum revenue potential. This session will delve into issues surrounding off-manifest inventory, licensed products vs. event day sales and how to craft the most successful financial venue game plan possible.

  • Peter McKenna, Stadium Director, Croke Park Stadium/Commercial Director, The GAA
  • Steve Sayer, Commercial Director, The O2 - AEG Europe (TBC)
  • Other panelists TBD

Successful U.S. Premium Sales & Marketing Strategies

The critical basics of premium revenue success will be explored in this session, including business development, renewal strategies, creative pricing and which amenities deliver the greatest ROI. Engage in a discussion about the unique challenges and differences between the practices of U.S. venues vs. current European venue dynamics. Michele is an industry veteran responsible for premium revenue than any arena in the world.

  • Michele Kajiwara, SVP Premium Sales & Service Staples Center, LA

The Future of the Sports Concierge Experience

Learn how teams are redefining their concierge services and amplifying the premium guest experience. This session will break down how to accelerate your team’s productivity, elevate client engagement, and drive team advocacy and retention like never before with a revolutionary new premium experience management platform.

  • Jessica Gaffney, Wavework Concierge

Leveraging Technology for Enhanced Premium Amenities & Hospitality

It is no surprise that VIP customers expect an unparalleled level of service, and these days, venues have access to more innovations than ever to over-deliver. Mobile, in-seat and self-service solutions are changing the way concessionaires interact with high-value customers. Learn how new technologies can improve the premium experience, drive more sales, and streamline operations. Includes a discussion about navigating the opportunities and potential pitfalls around access control, facial recognition for F&B and merchandise ordering, and data collection and analysis.

  • Ramón Alarcón, Director & General Manager of Business, Real Betis
  • George Vaughan, Head of Technology, Ascot Racecourse
  • Mike Bohndiek, Managing Director, PTI Consulting
  • More panellists TBD

3D Virtual Reality Solutions to Deliver a Unique Buying Experience

How does a team or venue promote advance ticket sales utilising state-of-the-art 3D Virtual Reality technology? Learn how 3D Digital Venue provides a world-class interactive experience for current venues and those under construction to maximise revenue. Explore how advanced interactive solutions are generating new revenue channels, optimising resources and delivering the most efficient fan experiences.

  • Greg Gorman, Head of USA / AU / APAC Markets, 3D Digital Technology

Innovative Tech Panel: Emerging Mediums for New Business Opportunities, presented by AVIXA

Creative digital technologies are becoming a centrepiece of the modern-day fan experience. Interactive displays, 4K video walls, projection mapping, and more are bringing venues to life in immersive, engaging, and brand-defining ways. However, today’s leaders understand that the power of integrated multi-media experiences extends beyond the walls of the venue itself, and are creating new experiences outside the traditional stadium/arena that further drive revenue for operators and excitement for fans.

  • Moderator: Dan Goldstein, Vice President of Content & Communications, AVIXA
  • Panelists: Julio Tárrega Díez, Director VCFplay/Head of AudioVisual, Campo de Mestalla/Valencia CF
  • Other panellists, TBD

Capturing New Revenue from Naming Rights of Premium Spaces

Corporate partnerships are a central lifeblood of any professional venue. However, gone are the days when sponsors just wanted to have their logo slapped on static signage around the venue. Now both sponsors and fans demand a memorable experience. Learn how to generate the maximum amount of sponsorship value by strategically planning and designing premium spaces with consideration for how they will be sold and packaged to corporate partners and how they will ultimately activate the space. Integrate the sales philosophy, design, positioning and client experience for high value naming rights opportunities.

Look Up! What We Miss When We’re Constantly Looking Down

The global sports world continues to keep shrinking through hyper-connectivity.  Everyone with a phone is now their own sports channel. But sports has been built through teamwork, and it is incumbent on leagues, live-event promoters, venue architects, tech companies, telecommunication giants, sponsors and fans to look up at each other to find the right combination of technology and human integration. Attending a live event represents one of our last town squares. If our heads are constantly buried below eye contact, we run the risk of becoming socially segmented. Join in this engaging conversation on how venues can find the perfect balance.

  • Andy Dolich

The Dynamics of the Advanced Technology Ticketing Ecosystem

The ticketing of live sports & entertainment events is a constantly evolving marketplace with the ongoing blurring of lines between Primary and Secondary platforms. Mobile Ticketing has also become increasingly essential for communicating, marketing, buying, delivering and transferring tickets. Come hear how industry experts are navigating ticketing challenges and opportunities, leveraging mobile strategies, managing inventory and maintaining pricing integrity.

Adding Value & Exclusive Access to the Traditional Premium Ticket

In the age of the alluring home arena featuring on-demand entertainment and numerous competing business entertainment options, it is increasingly difficult to keep fans and premium clients coming to live events. Hear from some of the top European and American event marketers on how creating can’t-miss, one-of-a-kind experiences is sparking renewed interest and revenue growth for premium memberships.


Re-Positioning "Premium"’" in the Subscription Economy Era

Effective marketing strategies and tactics have shifted dramatically over the past decade. The way companies and consumers purchase products and services has changed as well. In order to maximise sales, the branding, positioning and marketing of premium products needs to evolve to meet the current trends. This session will showcase several of the most successful B2B marketing companies and discuss how venues can leverage subscription-based trends to engage generate new revenue.

The Power of The Preview: Sales Centre Experience Design & Activation

Engaging high-value prospects increasingly requires a big, bold, unifying vision to show premium seat and suite buyers and sponsors why your offerings deserve their attention and investment. Meaningful interactions with prospects are the keys to success for premium sales teams, and preview centres can allow prospects to explore potential membership first-hand via creative environments and technology. Hear dynamic case studies from the Atlanta Hawks, Golden State Warriors and FC Minnesota.


eSports vs. Traditional Sports

The explosion of eSports has taken the venue industry by storm, and has the potential to surpass stick-and-ball sports revenues in a matter of years. No longer are venues built solely for traditional team tenants. Emerging events from eSports to Drone Racing are filling venues on non-game days, and even warranting the building of custom venues of their own. Are you building or renovating with this in mind, and capitalising on the way the game is changing to maximise utilisation and potential?

  • Ian Congdon, Head of Venue Sales - Arenas, The NEC Group
  • More panellists TBD

Pro Sports Super Panel: The Future of Sports Business & Live Events

This panel takes you behind the scenes and inside the board room with some of the most successful business leaders in sports. Listen in on this engaging discussion of how these top executives and their organisations are staying ahead of the curve in the fast-changing sports and entertainment industry. From premium tickets to venue experience to digital engagement, learn how the evolving technology landscape is shaping their business decisions and impacting the bottom line.


Premium Client Super Panel

Hear from the experts in the field — your clients and prospects! You may think you already know what they desire, but first-hand feedback is incredibly valuable in crafting products, messaging and services that are sure to resonate and engage. Here is your chance to uncover some key insights from those who actually buy, manage and use premium hospitality. What do these end-users really want and expect?


The Art and Practice of Premium Sales

Hear from leading professionals and industry experts as to how to optimise your Renewals, Pricing, Operations and Premium Sales, including practical marketing strategies, in this must-attend Sales Boot Camp for junior to medium level industry executives.


European Premium Venue of the Year Award
Premium Executive of the Year Award
Premium Innovation of the Year Award


New Trends of the Experience Economy
The All Inclusive Approach:  When & Where Can It Be Effective?
Changing the Game with Innovations in Food & Beverage
Top Successes in Sponsorship Activation
Year-Round Premium Service and Gifting
Creating a Winning Service Culture